Lately, we’ve been heading into the wilds of
Southern Arkansas in search of the illusive Candy-Striped
Boar. So far we’ve not had much luck but have had some interesting run-ins
nonetheless. The backwoods of Upper Louisiana
can get pretty sketchy and you never know what you’re going to come across out
there. I’ve seen woodchucks the size of bears and mosquitoes that could carry a
fat baby off into the tall pines, wailing for its mamma.
But…I’ve never seen anything like I’ve seen today. Never. Somehow the Gods were shining on us and we were delivered a bounty from the badlands.
Victoria, Powell and I were working our way through some rough country in our 4- wheeler, The Hooligan when we came around a corner and found ourselves at the edge of a river. As we were deciding where to ford, I stepped out to “drain the lizard” and thought I caught some movement out of the corner of my eye. Damned if it wasn't a group of bear cubs across river from us playing in some underbrush. They were cute little buggers so I called to Powell to come take a photo. Just then, we heard a blood curdling scream and a deer leapt out of the woods going hell for leather across the river towards us. I was trying to get my head around the idea of a screaming deer when everything I’ve ever known was blown to smithereens as a huge bear lunged from the brush in pursuit of the deer. Weird enough for you? Get this: Atop of the bear rode a swarthy, stoic-faced, bare-chested midget!
Seeing us, he came to a stop on our side of the river and stepped off of the panting beast. He swung his stubby legs over its back and waddled over to us and stuck his hand out. “Call me Runt!” he said, grinning like a wild man.
To save you all the details, camp was made, beers were cracked and in the light of a roaring fire that night, we welcomed Rob “Runt” MacKelpie onto the crew of the Frankie Anne III. The Ship’s Midget!